People with autism are objects of interventions, such as social training, that construct a normate (i.e., neurotypical) subject position. The emerging neurodiverse movements are reconceptualizing the meaning of autism. This paper examines expressions of an emerging counter-hegemonic discourse of Asperger subjectivity in the Swedish neurodiverse movement by exploring an ambivalent discourse of adaptation among adults with autism. The material was gathered during three months of ethnographic fieldwork in an educational setting in Sweden among adults diagnosed with Asperger syndrome. The key meanings linked to the discourse of adaptation concern meaningful versus meaningless training, adaptation to an NT environment or to the person with autism, the meaning of affirmation, and the possibility of understanding the experience of autism. An understanding of adaptation is treated as integral to producing a counter-hegemonic discourse of "normal for an Asperger" and alternative forms of autistic normalcy formulated by adults with autism.


A medical perspective on autism identifies social and communication impairments as "core deficits and prognostic indicators of autism" (cf. Landa et al., 2011; Wing, 1988). Autism is partly constructed as "abnormalities in social interaction and communication" (cf. Noterdaeme & Hutzelmeyer-Nickels, 2010). These impairments are described as tending to isolate people with autism from the rest of society (Wing, 1988). Studies map or describe impairments among people with autism and, as a result, formulate or evaluate interventions. Common interventions are various forms of social skills training, aiming to change social interaction patterns and enhance social reciprocity. Several studies of adults with autism or of interventions for people with autism use the degree of "social adaptation" as a measure of progress and success (see, e.g., Kanner et al., 1972); the studied interventions are primarily directed toward children and young people with autism. In several studies, neurologically typical (NT) (cf., e.g., Brownlow, 2010) siblings, parents, and peers are used in the interventions. Some of the interventions are directed toward NT parents, to teach them to train and develop strategies for their children. In some interventions for children with autism, "typically developing peers" or siblings without autism are used as ideal playmates who train the children with autism and from whom they are supposed to learn (cf., e.g., Castorina & Negri, 2011; Jull & Mirenda, 2011). This dominant, medical perspective on autism has been criticized by several researchers and members of autistic self-advocacy (or neurodiverse) movements. Brownlow (2010) argues that the common feature of various interventions directed toward people with autism is their goal of changing people with autism to fit into a non-autistic world. Nancy Bagatell (2007) talks about a (neurotypical) discourse of "normalcy" that demands that people with autism "pass," "act normal," "fit in," and "pretend to be normal."

Rosemarie Garland-Thomson (1997) sees the meaning of disability as residing in social relationships, through which one group—the normates—is legitimated because they possess culturally valued physical characteristics (i.e., able-bodiedness). The normate is defined as the veiled subject position of the cultural self, the figure outlined by the array of deviant others whose marked bodies shore up the normate's boundaries (Garland-Thomson, 1997, pp. 7-8). The normate subject position emerges only when we scrutinize the social processes and discourses that constitute physical and cultural otherness (Garland-Thomson, 1997, pp. 8-9). Following Garland-Thomson, medical perspectives on autism actively produce the normate (e.g., the neurotypical, "typically developing peers") through a discourse of autism as social and communication deficit (i.e., as a disability, as a disabled-bodiedness).

Kristin Bumiller et al. (2008) explore the capacity of neurodiversity movements to reconceptualize autism, for example, by challenging beliefs about autism as a source of difficulties and emphasizing autism as a source of strengths and an expression of neurological difference (see also Blume, 1997; Brownlow & O'Dell, 2006). Bumiller, following on Chet Meeks' (2000) analyses of normalization and antinormalization in the context of sexual politics, discusses the use of antinormalization in parallel with normalization in the neurodiverse movement, as either mutual or contingent empowerment strategies. As an expression of this ambivalence within the movement, Nancy Bagatell (2007) demonstrates, based on an ethnographic study, how people with autism are forced to conform, in both the "Aspie world" and the "non-Aspie (or NT) world," to norms that are not always compatible.

The norms in the Aspie world can be represented as an emerging counter-hegemonic discourse of "autistic normalcy" (Bertilsdotter Rosqvist, forthcoming), or what it means to be "'normal' for people with autism" (Bagatell, 2007), in the neurodiverse movements. An expression of this may be an ideal of openness, i.e., "coming out" (cf. Bagatell, 2007; Bertilsdotter Rosqvist, forthcoming), regarding autism as a neurological difference rather than a deficit and challenging NT normative ideals and perspectives on the world (see, e.g., Davidson, 2010; Bertilsdotter Rosqvist, forthcoming).

Alongside the critique of the normate (i.e., the neurotypical, "typically developing peers") and of NT-normative discourses of autism as a deficit (i.e., as a disability or disabled-bodiedness), a positive alternative subject position is created: the Aspie or the Asperger. This paper aims to analyze expressions of this emerging Asperger subjectivity by exploring a discourse of adaptation in a group of adults with high-functioning autism (i.e., Asperger syndrome).


This article presents results from a research project aimed at describing and analyzing experiences and representations of Asperger Syndrome (AS) among adults diagnosed with AS in "Asperger normative" (i.e. social environments dominated by or on people with AS's own terms) social environments. This article is based on three months of ethnographic fieldwork in one such environment—at a postsecondary vocational course for adults diagnosed with Asperger syndrome (AS) in Sweden. Although experiences among adults with autism/AS in postsecondary vocational courses are little discussed in research, these experiences are not the focus in themselves in the study.

The entire class was comprised of ten students, aged 20-50, seven women and three men who were all Caucasian. In addition to the student group, there were two female teaching assistants, Helena and Johanna, who were diagnosed with AS. And there were two female special education teachers who were not so diagnosed. In this study, I focus on the students and teaching assistants; when I refer to the "group" from here on, I include both students and assistants. Most people in the group were diagnosed as adults. Most participate regularly in social and political activities arranged by and for people with Asperger syndrome/high-functioning autism. The study examines a group who interacted socially several days a week for several months. When I met the group for the first time, its members had known each other for three weeks, and the group evolved over the duration of my visit. For example, they increasingly kidded around with each other, and those who were quiet at first became more talkative over time. Several participants also began socializing outside school.

The research included on-site participant observation and thematic interviews of students and teaching assistants, individually and in groups. During the fieldwork period, I observed group activities two days per week, following the students for the entire school day. During this observation, I usually sat quietly and noted various dialogues between students, teaching assistants, and teachers. I asked questions whenever I did not understand something. I also joined in ongoing informal conversations, mainly during breaks. Toward the end of each observation day, I wrote detailed field notes focusing on dialogues reconstructed from my daily notes and memory. At the end of each field note, I wrote analytical reflections on my own feelings and on topics of conversation among group members. These analytical reflections formed the basis for individual interviews and three group interviews (cf. Sperry & Mesibov, 2005). Participation in the group interviews was voluntary. Some informants were present for all group discussions and others were present only once or twice. In addition to myself, four other people participated in the first group discussion and six others in the other two sessions, which lasted an average of 75 minutes. Only women participated in the first group interview; one man participated in the second and two men in the third.

I based my analysis of the group discussions and field notes on rhetorical and discourse psychological analysis (Billig, 1987/1993; Edley, 2001; Edley and Wetherell, 1999; Wetherell & Potter, 1988). Important concepts in this kind of analysis are the idea of interpretative repertoires and the idea of subject positions. Interpretative repertoires can be interpreted as culturally available resources or 'storylines' from which members from a specific society 'can both draw on and resist in order to produce their own accounts' (Jones 2002:2). In the article I understand and refer to this concept as different, sometimes competing, 'meanings' within ambivalent discourses. The concept of subject positions is here defined as "locations within a conversation," or, "identities made relevant by specific ways of talking" (Edley, 2001:210). After a phase of reading and re-reading the material to distinguish patterns both within and between the parts, an ambivalent discourse of adaptation emerged. Within it connections between different meanings (repertoires) of training, adaptation, affirmation and understanding including patterns of subject positions connected to the different meanings was formulated. Finally, the paper was translated into English.

My own experiences of people with Asperger syndrome were limited before the fieldwork, not being diagnosed as such myself. During the fieldwork, I was trying to learn how to behave so as to fit into the group, and I ultimately experienced Asperger syndrome in the group as both a verbal and a bodily discourse. The group treated me in a friendly manner, making me feel welcome and part of the group. During the fieldwork, my own subject position was constantly shifting based on social interactions in the group, being either that of an "NT who is trying to understand," or a "person with traits of Asperger." Honesty about myself and openness about the research process were important aspects of the method. The field notes were submitted to a virtual learning environment, open only to the students, assistants, and teachers. Participants were given the opportunity to comment on the field notes during the discussion groups or by email to me; in addition, the transcripts of the group discussions were emailed to the participants. Participants were given the opportunity to read and comment on the preliminary drafts of the present paper. In response to comments, I revised the methodological section and added this reflection part. The participants themselves chose to describe the course as an occupational training course. Since the course is the only one of its kind in Sweden, I would threaten the anonymity of the participants if I were to be more specific in describing the aims and content of the course.

The participants spoke of themselves by preference as "Aspergers," to emphasize Asperger syndrome as an identity, an essential part of their personality. This is why I have chosen to use this term rather than "people-first language" (for a discussion of this matter, see, e.g., Brownlow, 2010; Davidson & Henderson, 2010). However, in cases in which the participants used other terms, for example, "people with a diagnosis" or "we who are living with Asperger's," I have used these as well.


The key different meanings identified in the data linked to a discourse of adaptation are presented here; these meanings concern differences between meaningful and meaningless training, adaptation, and understanding.

Meaningful versus meaningless training

The participants' narratives reveal two meanings of training. In the first, the participants described training as meaningless and as expressing the expectation or demand from NTs in their lives, especially NT parents, that they should be someone other than who they are. This is described in terms of "training away your personality" (Maria), or training to "be someone else" (Helena) (cf. Brownlow, 2010). In the second narrative, participants described training as meaningful and as a prerequisite for a "good life." Meaningful training is associated with the importance of certain "practical skills." One example Johanna mentions is practicing driving down into the parking garage at a large shopping center, accompanied by her support worker, to build the courage to do it on her own.

Participants emphasized the differences between meaningless and meaningful training, while arguing for the importance of "training at your own pace," knowing "what stuff you have to be able to do," or "why you have to do stuff"—that is, the importance of motivation to training for the Asperger's own sake. Kristina illustrates the importance of motivation by telling how she became motivated to practice using the phone. Her parents helped her understand that she had to use the phone to deal with for example public agencies if she was to "live on [her] own and handle [her] own life." Mikael also stresses the importance of differentiating between important and less important training. He relates how his parents have decided that certain things are "essential, so that you can live an independent life," such as showering every day. He and his parents have tried other things, such as learning to ride a bike, but have given up and concluded that they are not "necessary." Here, the parents are described as people who are able both to adapt to Mikael (the Asperger) and to distinguish between important training and training that is not essential for Mikael's (the Asperger's) wellbeing.

Meaningless training is associated with practicing for situations that are constantly changing. For example, Helena describes problems with practicing going to a café by saying: "It's going to be different every time depending on where you are, who you run into, so it really makes no difference whether you've practiced. I've been to cafés tons of times and I have the same problems every time." Several in the group laugh when Helena says this. The participants' stories about meaningless skills training are repeatedly met by laughter from the group. This both confirms that the stories relate to the experience of several participants and challenges beliefs that such training—as well as NT social norms of social interaction more generally—is meaningful. Instead, such training seems merely ridiculous. Johanna says that she sees less meaning in training that "you have no chance of succeeding at," i.e., mainly social skills training. For example, she mentions greeting rituals:

Johanna: Me, the one who is always super nervous when I arrive, when I'm supposed to come in and greet people. I never know what you're supposed to do. Just in that first minute when I'm supposed to be somewhere and meet new people, I have no idea what to do, I am totally out of it. Sometimes you're supposed to hug. Sometimes you're supposed to shake hands. And I don't know how you're supposed to act. And it makes no difference how much we practice, because it's different every place you go. And if you learn something like that, "this is what you do when you meet people," it works in some situations, but it is so wrong in others that I might seem completely bizarre when I get there and do what I learned to do in training—"walk up, shake hands, say the full name."

Training for constantly changing situations is regarded as futile and meaningless, as is training that does not take place on the Asperger's own terms, but on NT terms. This challenges the NT's preferential right of interpretation over Aspergers. Sometimes the participants refer to NTs in general, but sometimes more specifically refer to "NT parents." Helena illustrates this when she describes her encounters with parents of children with autism, and refers to divergent beliefs among NTs and people with AS about what makes the latter happy.

Helena: I meet a lot of parents, and get to hear how they are training [their children] so they will be able to go along on diving trips to Egypt. They have to be able to do that, and to be able to ski, and they have to be able to train and learn these skills according to a certain schedule, because they will be so incredibly happy when they do it. And, sure, I suppose you might think so, but I think that if she were allowed to choose for herself, she might want to sit and just let the sand run through her fingers or whatever. After all, I can sit like this for a really long time and like, blink, block out the light and get a lot of this "doodly doo …" (general laughter)

Johanna: On the subway. (general laughter)

Helena: Oh yes. I sit and watch the washing machine go round. A lot. That makes me happy. I don't have to go skiing, so why should I have to learn? Of course you develop and learn skills, but training at stuff, for whom? For whose sake, really?

Talk about energy recurs in the group. Helena distinguishes between training for things that just "sap energy" versus for things that "save energy." One example of training considered as only sapping energy is practicing things that can be compensated for in other ways. Helena illustrates this by saying that, if you are uncomfortable talking on the phone, you can just as easily compensate by communicating via text message or the computer instead of practicing talking on the phone. Another example is getting help from her support worker when she has to shop, since that also saves energy.


As when talking about training, participants use two different meanings about demands from NT-others to adapt to NTs.

From one meaning, the participants emphasize the importance of adaptation, normalization, and "fitting in." From the other meaning, the participants stress the importance of "being yourself," being how you want to be, and maintaining a critical stance toward demands for adaptation. The various meanings of adaptation were used both to criticize NT norms and to make distinction (age and gender) in the Asperger group. For example, Helena describes how a younger, female AS activist is "more into adaptation, normalization." This stands in contrast to Helena herself and women activists of Helena's age ("we older [women]") whom she describes as people who "have learned anyway" and are more apt to say "leave us alone" and feel liberated at the idea that "wow, I can be myself." Adaptation is also connected to gender, and the participants claim that women with AS try harder to adapt than do men. For example, Helena says that family and friends make greater demands for women to adapt, so women with Asperger often become "experts at picking up cues from the people around them."

The first meaning stresses the importance of adaptation to enable independent living, as in discussions of training as something that can be meaningful under certain circumstances. Conditions are attached to adaptation through emphasizing the importance of also being accepted for who you are (as an Asperger) and knowing that you are different (from NTs) (cf. Brownlow & O'Dell, 2006).

The group returns to the theme of energy in the discussions. Talk about adaptation to NT norms describes this as arduous, as something that saps one's energy and leads to fatigue. A situation involving Kristina and Anna illustrates this point.

Toward the end of my second day at the school, I am sitting with Kristina and Anna. Kristina says she is tired. I ask what makes her tired. She thinks about it a little, and then says listening and reflecting make her tired. She adds: "You can fast-forward or pause a movie, but you can't do that when you're here." Anna and Kristina then continue talking about what makes them tired. They mention the effort to stay alert and pay attention (Anna) or to sit still for a long time (Kristina). Anna says that if she had her druthers, she would like to be able to choose for herself, to lie on a mat on the floor, for example, instead of being "forced into a mold, to adapt." Kristina says that "paying attention to who is giving and taking" in a social context takes a great deal of energy.

In the discussions of affirmation, the participants differentiate between what it means to be affirmed by NTs and by other Aspergers, and who should adapt to whom. Being affirmed by the NTs in their lives and the possible ways NTs can adapt are repeatedly associated with conditions. Several emphasize the diagnosis, which sets a condition of awareness and acceptance of AS as a disability by the NTs in their lives. Mikael says that, for his part, the diagnosis has meant that the NTs in his life were aware early on that he was "a little different, maybe" or "has these problems," but "is totally okay anyway," and that "it's no problem, there's nothing wrong about it." In turn, this has led to fewer expectations for him to adapt. Nor has he ever felt, "Jeeze, I'm such a weirdo," and tried to fit into an environment "I thought I belonged in." In line with this, Helena argues that NTs must also adapt. At the same time, she points out that diagnosis does not always lead to adaptation, that Aspergers can easily end up in a milieu "where people want to change you and, like, normalize you." She compares the situation to that of a person who uses a wheelchair: "You don't "tell them 'crawl up here' if there is no ramp, you'd never do that, but you're free to say that to Aspergers." Several participants describe parental non-acceptance or non-acknowledgement—for example, by making light of the disability—as something very detrimental to their self-esteem that makes it difficult for people to accept themselves and their disability. This can also involve the person with AS feeling affirmed by her parents when she tries to adapt to them.

Helena is critical of attempts to be accepted by NTs, since this acceptance is connected to NTs' demands for adaptation. Instead, she mentions various opportunities to obtain understanding and affirmation in the Asperger community (cf., e.g., Dekker, 2000). The importance of understanding and affirmation was raised as a subject in one group discussion. During the discussion, the participants distinguished between routines and structure—something emphasized in TEACCH 1 -oriented training (cf., e.g., Mesibov et al., 2005)—and affirmation. Kristina tells how her father has always been very structured and there have always been "a lot of routines and fixed frameworks" in her family. On the other hand, she says: "[I have] never been affirmed as the person I am."

Kristina: So, routines and structure can never be enough, because you feel lost anyway, and empty somehow, if you get no affirmation of who you are. I'd rather live in chaos and be acknowledged.

In a discussion during the fieldwork, the participants touch on the distinction between what is "normal" and what is "normal for Aspergers" (cf. Bagatell, 2007). Helena describes how she began to feel normal when she was diagnosed and met other Aspergers: she could then get a glimpse of what was "normal for us." However, she emphasizes that her understanding of what is normal for Aspergers is not always accepted by NTs. For example, when she started working as a teaching assistant at the school, several of the teachers questioned whether her perceptions were shared by other Aspergers. They were more inclined to emphasize her experiences as unique to her. Helena objected and insisted that the experiences were shared by the students at the school. She describes how she had to explain to the NT teachers: "No, this is a norm among Aspergers, this is normal for us." Kristina sees "normal" as an expression of adaptation to NTs in and of itself: "Aspergers adapt; if someone tells an Asperger 'that was not normal,' the reason is that the Asperger has not adapted" (cf. Cesaroni & Garber, 1991). During the discussion, Mikael asks whether the participants feel that they make an effort to fit in, to pass as a neurotypical person (adapt to the NT-dominated environment) (c.f. Bagatell, 2007; see also Bertilsdotter Rosqvist, forthcoming). He says that he "tries to think about roughly how I'm doing. You don't do the same thing when you see people with Asperger as you do with NTs." Several of the participants describe how they repeatedly attempt to fit in when they interact with "normals." Helena describes this as a manifestation of how "a lot of Aspergers have their autopilot on, they start to act normal even though they don't want to." In line with Helena's reasoning, Maria says that she made a huge effort to fit in, especially before she was diagnosed. Helena then comments on beliefs among NTs that Aspergers are incapable of picking up cues about what is expected. She believes "it might actually be the opposite, that you get very good at picking up cues," that people perceive her as "extraordinarily social," which Kristina declares is a sign of adaptation. She also identifies ambivalence about her diagnosis: along with the diagnosis, one has suddenly been given "the right to do wrong," but this can also be seen as a demand to make mistakes.

Understanding: Who should understand whom

Affirmation and adaptation are linked to understanding in the participants' discussions. Helena repeatedly brings up Aspergers' opportunities to understand, and thus affirm, one another. Even though you might not prefer to socialize with other Aspergers, such interaction brings "greater opportunities to find someone who will affirm you." In one of the group discussions and in a similar vein, Helena describes a situation involving a student from the other Asperger class who, in a group discussion:

Helena: … blurted out these kinds of short remarks about, yes, or how he felt. And I remarked on it, asking "Do you feel that we don't understand what you mean?" Because I don't think NTs do, they can't connect an emotion to the words, it just sounds wacko, but we actually do that. Lots of times.

NTs are described as people who cannot understand Aspergers. However, the participants distinguish between NTs who understand that they do not understand, or who try to understand, and those who are neither aware of this nor make any attempt to understand. The first are described as people who try to adapt to Aspergers (cf. Cesaroni & Garber, 1991) and the latter as people who simply demand that Aspergers adapt to NT norms. This is expressed in several participants' stories about their experiences of NTs' expectations that they, as Aspergers, ought to "understand NT-others first" or show NT-others respect and take responsibility for NT-others, and that they are "affirmed based on how NT/normal [they] act" (Helena) or are expected to "act like everybody else" (Eva).

Helena says: Our difficulties in life have often been that we have adapted too much, until you lose yourself. And you don't even ask yourself "What am I feeling?" Because that also takes time when you have Asperger, to identify feelings, and so you act according to what is expected of you, and then you lose a big part of yourself and your self-esteem.


Training, adaptation, affirmation, and comprehension are all recurrent discursive themes in an ambivalent discourse of adaptation within the group.

Two competing meanings of training are found in the group, training being regarded as either meaningless or meaningful. Meaningless training is associated with NT demands and does not occur on people with AS's own terms: it asks Aspergers to change their fundamental identity and has a small chance of success; moreover, it is energy draining, as the cost in terms of psychic energy is too high in relation to the results. Meaningful training is of course a prerequisite for a "good life," and the participants emphasize the importance of certain practical abilities in being able to live independently. They must, however, be allowed to train at their own pace, to become motivated (i.e., understand why they should train for something), and to train for their own sake. Based on narratives about the two meanings of training, two types of (subject positions) "NT parents" are distinguished: those who compel their children to train for things that are not actually meaningful or necessary, and those who can both adapt the training to Asperger needs and motivate the Asperger by explaining the importance of the particular training.

There are also two competing meanings of adaptation. Adaptation, like training, is according to one meaning understood as conferring the ability to fit in (to pass as NT when it is needed) and live independently. On the other hand — according to another meaning, it is regarded as an expression of power inequality between Aspergers and NTs; as NT requirements (of passing as NTs) that make it difficult for Aspergers to be or understand themselves. The group advocates an alternative definition of adaptation, like training, as something that must happen on Aspergers' terms. They regard adaptation as important under certain circumstances, but believe it is important to combine Asperger adaptability with NT acceptance of Aspergers for who they are, as different from NTs. Just as with training, adjustment to NT standards without doing so on Aspergers' terms is understood as draining and fatiguing.

The discussion of the significance of affirmation refers to the differences between affirmation by NT people (NT affirmation) and by others with Asperger's (Asperger affirmation). Even in this discussion, NTs and Aspergers are distinguished. NT affirmation is seen as risky, as inadequate or conditional. NT affirmation is described as associated with NT expectations about training and adaptation, i.e., Aspergers are affirmed and accepted to the extent that they succeed in adapting to NT standards (passing as NTs), rather than on their own terms as individuals. While a diagnosis of Aspergers can cause the NT environment to adapt to Aspergers' needs, in that the Asperger is now expected not to pass, to make "mistakes," participants' narratives also suggest that the diagnosis itself results in the NT environment wanting to change and normalize them. In contrast to such NT affirmation is Asperger affirmation and the ability of Aspergers to understand each other. Through encounters with other Aspergers, the participants describe how they felt understood and accepted as Aspergers, and that they began to feel normal by developing an understanding what is normal for Aspergers At the same time, this "Asperger normalcy" is described as something that is not always accepted by NTs. "Normal" among NTs is associated with degrees of adjustment to NTs. Through talk of affirmation and understanding, a distinction is made between Aspergers and NT people. While Aspergers can both understand and acknowledge other Aspergers, the ability and desire of NTs to affirm and understand Aspergers is limited. At best, NTs can understand that they do not understand Aspergers and try to adapt to their needs, rather than requiring that they adapt to NT standards.

The discourse of adaptation, including training, affirmation, and understanding within the group is producing distinctions between NTs and Aspergers (two different subject positions). Through the discourse the group members also challenge NT-centered norms of social interaction and communication, in that these are described as based on the needs and conditions of NTs. An alternative normalcy, i.e., "normal for Aspergers," is constructed as a counter-hegemonic discourse within the group, a discourse I describe as "autistic normalcy" (cf. Bertilsdotter Rosqvist, forthcoming), which resists the more dominant (NT)discourse about what is normal, according to which training, adaptation, and affirmation are shaped. The participants' narratives can be viewed as expressing an ongoing reconceptualization of not only what autism is, but also what social interaction and communication entail, thus creating the alternative subject position of the Asperger. Based on the participants' narratives, autism does not entail social and communication deficits if social interaction and communication take place on Aspergers rather than NT terms. Adaptation does not necessarily indicate success, but may instead indicate the loss of oneself as an Asperger.

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  1. TEACCH refers to Treatment and Education of Autistic and related Communication handicapped Children. TEACCH or TEACCH-inspired methods (commonly referred to as Structured Teaching) used to be the most commonly used training method for people with autism in Sweden since its introduction by The National Society of Autism and Asperger in Sweden (RFA) 1992. Since the late 90s a more diverse range of training methods has been used, but TEACCH-inspired methods is still common.

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